Thursday, February 28, 2013

Book Review: The Fairest Beauty

The Fairest BeautyAuthor: Melanie Dickerson
Publication Date: January 22, 2013
Publisher: Zondervan

A daring rescue. A difficult choice. Sophie desperately wants to get away from her stepmother's jealousy, and believes escape is her only chance to be happy. Then a young man named Gabe arrives from Hagenheim Castle, claiming she is betrothed to his older brother, and everything twists upside down. This could be Sophie's one chance at freedom---but can she trust another person to keep her safe? Gabe defied his parents Rose and Wilhelm by going to find Sophie, and now he believes they had a right to worry: the girl's inner and outer beauty has enchanted him. Though romance is impossible---she is his brother's future wife, and Gabe himself is betrothed to someone else---he promises himself he will see the mission through, no matter what. When the pair flee to the Cottage of the Seven, they find help---but also find their feelings for each other have grown. Now both must not only protect each other from the dangers around them---they must also protect their hearts.

“If Duke Baldewin’s daughter were still alive, it made sense that she could be in danger from the shadowy Ermengard; Duke Baldewin’s daughter would be sixteen, maybe seventeen years old, making her a threat to the duchess’s rule. Though surely someone would have corrected the erroneous report of her demise by now. The truth would surely have leaked out and spread to Hagenheim. Or so one would think.” – Finished Copy pg. 14

“Sophie watched the stranger’s mouth as he spoke, as if seeing the words forming on his lips as well as hearing them would help her make sense of everything he said. Was she Duke Baldewin’s daughter? Was she betrothed? It was too strange to comprehend.” – Finished Copy pg. 58

“He’d forced a kiss on her, and she hadn’t even been able to reach for her knife. She was still alert enough to wonder if he would truly marry her and take her away from here. Hadn’t she thought just last week, when he visited her in the dungeon, that if anyone could help her escape it was Lorencz? But could she trust him to marry her? Besides, she wasn’t sure she wanted to spend the rest of her life with him.” – Finished Copy pg. 66

The duke’s beloved daughter. Sophie allowed herself to dwell on that. Her father, the duke, had loved her. She was loved. Once upon a time.” – Finished Copy pg. 76

This is the first book that I have read by Melanie Dickerson and I don’t know why?! She has written two other fairytale retellings, similar to this one, and is working on a fourth! This story is obviously a retelling of Snow White and it lives up to the original. Sophie is the daughter of Duke Baldewin, but she doesn’t know that. The evil Duchess of Ermengard has kept Sophie prisoner for many years and has always envied her natural beauty and charm. However, someone knows the secret that the evil duchess has tried to kept hidden for so many years: Sophie is royalty and is now in grave danger and will soon face death at the duchess’s hand. This news falls into the hands of Gabe, a young man from Hagenheim Castle, and he makes it his personal mission to save Sophie from grave danger. Will he beat the Duchess of Ermengard to the chase?

I fell in love with this entire fairytale all over again. Even though they were all different characters, I still loved every single one of them. I always love the villains too for some reason and the Duchess of Ermengard was no different. She was written with such hatred and animosity, that I couldn’t help but love her character. This, ladies and gentlemen, is how a proper villain should be written. I, of course, loved Sophie’s character as well, resembling Snow White in the story. She was so loveable and fit the Snow White persona perfectly! I was immediately drawn to her character and the courage she exhibits right from the first page.

The plot takes some unexpected twists and turns that even I was not ready for. I loved that once Snow White escapes the action begins to speed up and I absolutely adore her rescuer, Gabe! Gabe is courageous, noble, and persistent; in other words, everything you expect Prince Charming to be. The romance was perfectly paced and staged. It became somewhat predictable from the start in this department, but I was still pleasantly surprised by the end. This is a fairytale after all, and we all know that everyone lives happily ever after, maybe?

I greatly recommend this book to fairytale lovers, especially if you enjoy a good retelling! You won’t want to miss this one!

***A BIG thank you to the publishers at Zondervan for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for my honest and unbiased review***

1 comment:

  1. Melanie Dickerson's books always sound so interesting! I haven't read any of her books yet, but I really want to check her work out.... This one sounds quite good, and the cover is gorgeous, too!

    Thank you for stopping by my blog! I'm now following you, as well! :)